Friday, May 6, 2011

Sandwich school committee: Time to reorganize

The first meeting of the newly minted school committee will convene with a vote for chairman. Who is best prepared to lead the committee?

Log your favorite in the poll at the right.


  1. Linell GrundmanMay 6, 2011 at 7:40 AM

    Congratulations to John and Frank on the BOS and to Bob and Sue on the School Committee. Thank you voters for voting to fix the roofs and windows at two of our school which allows us to take advantage of the state program that will give us a sizable chunk of money back.

  2. Carl Johansen would state that Shawn Cahill is the most qualified at this time.
    He has the ability to listen with his ears, before he speaks.
    He has served on the board long enough to understand all of the past conflictions, yet process them out for the benifit of our children.

    This next year will be a very trying time in attempting to undo all of the year long disputes for our school system and its Superintendant.

    I would suspect that a few more bumps in the road ahead will be overcome with a more honest approach to the role of the school committee as it relates to the children and not the adults who sit on this committee. That will be a good thing for our embattled school system that has projected a very bad image across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts with all of the past years disputes.

    Many more revolations will be forthcomming as every one begins to fully understand the harm this past majority of school board members have inflicted upon the children and the town itself, by unprofessional leadership and personal conflicts.

    The citizens of Sandwich have made a very bold statement, enough is enough and we want and need a change, which is what occured last night.

    The two new candidates Sue Sundermyer and Bod Catalini have brought true leadership back to this disfuntional board and with good judgement will maintain the balance of what should be the goals going forward for our school district.

    It is also noted that the passing of the needed repairs to the school roofs only has come about do to the dilligance of our out going superintendant efforts. She had absolutly no help from the majority members in getting this accomplished.
    I wonder, if I was in her shoes would I care about how the needed repairs would get fixed?

    Let us all hope every one can now move forward to enable our school district to move in a postive manner and once again I believe at this point in our troubled district, that person is Shawn Cahill and I wish him well in this endeavor.

    Carl Johansen

    A concerned citizen of Sandwich

  3. Do you really want Shawn Cahill as the chair? That could get complicated since his wife works for the school system. He is also in the schools as a part of his public job. Is that the way we really want to go? Be careful.

  4. Randy
    Since your straw polls are not scientifically done and you are an elected representative I find them questionable. You could unfairly influence the process and I really don't believe that you are aware of your actions.

  5. @Most recent Anonymous:

    Did I ever claim that my straw polls are scientific?

    Did I give up my First Amendment rights when I became a state rep?

    Are you suggesting that these things be sorted out in secret? Too much input might unfairly influence the backroom dealings?

    Are you kidding?

  6. Carl Johansen would ask what is the difference between the present co chair and her husband that not only is a teacher in the system , but an active union rep?

    What is the difference with MRS Crossman who actually works part time or whatever with the present community school at the pool?

    They did not seem to be any problem for some before.

    It also noted that 614 voters cast a bullet vote and 89 did not even vote at all on the school committee candidates.

    Even considering those numbers the third place finisher would not even had enough votes to over come the vote Sue and Bob recieved to change the history here in the Sandwich School District. Good changes are on the way, folks

    Carl Johansen

    A concerned citizen of Sandwich

  7. So a secret ballot is backroom dealings?
    Are you serious? I thought that was part of our democracy. I believe that the choice for chair will be in open session so try not to spin it.
    You bring it right down to the common denominator, don't you. I'm surprised.

  8. Hey, Anonymous, I'm all for free speech, including Internet polls. Nothing wrong with it.

    You misinterpreted my response. Sorting things out in secret = backroom dealings. I made no reference to a secret ballot.

    But if you think that all of the discussion regarding who will be nominated and voted chairman is going to occur on camera at the first meeting, well...

  9. Carl
    I am a teacher and your facts are incorrect. Ms. Linehan's husband is not a Union Representative. Carl with all due respect do you fact check your statements before you speak.

  10. Give us a chairman with brains and graceMay 6, 2011 at 5:54 PM

    As I understand it, Cahill's wife is not in the union. Yes, he would have to bow out of votes that have to do with the budget line item her salary is in or I would think in votes that may effect policy in her area or department, perhaps even in votes that effect pay or policy regarding her direct supervisor. His election began the slippery slop of exceptions by way of rulings from the state ethics deciding what is best for our community where conflict of interest is concerned. I know Cahill has passed the ethics commission just like Crossman and Linehan. I would like to see us stay away from putting people in these circumstances on the SC in future to my way of thinking, but Shaun is level headed and going into his 5th year. Given what he has survived this year and given his frequent attempts at expression rational thinking at the table this year, I think he would do an excellent job.

  11. Reject the double standardMay 6, 2011 at 9:01 PM

    As I understand it Mrs. Cahill still benefits from the Union Contract.

  12. Ya know what is interesting. We have an election, the people spoke, they CLEARLY voted in a new majority. They voted it in, in my very humble estimation, because they wanted change. Mr. Johansen (read his posts on this blog) CLEARLY stir it up. I will not! I voted a bullet, but I also (as a TRUE AMERICAN)look forward and not rehash with the same old malice.

    Yes, I will would state that Mr. Cahill has the ability to do the chairman's job. He is the smartest of the experienced of the old minority, but his wife's position, may be a problem he must overcome. To me its clear that it will either be Cahill or the Killion person, so let's speak forward, especially you Mr. Johansen. Yes, its a free country, but it is also better when we look forward. My guess is that you will find a still divided board, but a much more civil board and because in large part that the new minority will do their part to keep things civil.

  13. This election is fraudulent and should be redone. Dr. Johnson used a public building the night before an election appearing to not only support her own case but through her lawyer appeared to sway voters away from Ms. Marshall. He called the old committee the "Reform Committee" and named Marshall several times in a negative light. He said relations with current school committee members have not been cordial and that the current committee "expressed hostility" toward Dr. Johnson. The election was mentioned as a way to resolve this by people present including school committee member Barbara Susko who asked a leading question. The other side was not presented at all. This struck me as a campaign strategy more than anything else. Remember this was all printed first thing in the morning in the Cape Cod Times, and this all happened on the taxpayer's dime

  14. give us a chairman with brains and graceMay 7, 2011 at 8:00 AM

    Well said anon 4:38. I agree completely. Given we have three people sitting on the School Committee with some degree of conflict of interests even though they got their permission slip from the state ethics commission, it is rather moot point about Shaun's wife. The issue is how business is conducted at the table and beyond when it comes to a good chairman. This year the SC neglected everything except their one goal of getting Johnson out the door.

    Shaun has cemented relationships with members of the other boards. He understands the town and is expert in the needs of our children when it comes to prevention measures for substance abuse. Recently he has been part of the substance abuse task force for the town. I agree completely that looking forward is critical now, but that also involves repairing the damage done. Given Shaun's relationships of trust within all of town government and on his committee, I think he can do the unique and important work of guiding this year's school committee.

    Andrea would obviously be a good choice as well. She has stood up to the majority mind set this past year over and over. She has spoken to the truth over and over. Either one clearly will get us back on track.

  15. K, Nonsense. The election is by no means fraudulent. The meeting the night before had nothing to do with endorsing a candidate. I thought it was brilliant that, instead of letting the CCTimes and the rumor mill control the spin hoped for by the action taken by the 4 SC members bent on destroying Dr. Johnson, Dr. Johnson and her attorney got in front of the story. I would guess that no one involved in the final plot line to this demented tail would have thought the truth would be out in the open through the released letters in 24 hours. What happened behind closed doors Tuesday night when it by law should have been a public session was a million times more political. What happened Wednesday is something the town and the schools need to learn from. Quit letting the local papers, the blogs and the rumor mills (biggest factor in Sandwich) control the story. It festers that way. Do more press conferences, press releases and get out in front of the story. MIsinformation, spin, rumor, etc is ruining us. The tables got turned in this case. The rumor mill expected to take Johnson down even more was shut down by the facts.

  16. Carl Johansen would state that given the events of the past year especially churned up by the majority board members, it will be a new beginning for the newly composed school committee members.
    With out question many hurdles remain, going forward and with out question a few more bumps in the road toward recovery.

    It would be great, if no member had any conflictions going forward, but that is not the case and every one is aware of most of them.

    The challenge for the new chair will be to contain the conflictions outside of the school committee meetings and I feel that will be another strength for MR. Cahill.
    Unfortunitly having said that , the remaining, once majority members will continue in the same pattern as before. They know more eyes will be watching and so the conflictions will be much more laid back.
    It would be a positive move by them to actually be more involved in the childrens educational process and leave the old conflictions at the doors.
    Only time will determine if that will be the case, as the new board makeup continues in attempting to aliegn the goals of the district to the children rather then personalities.

    We all need to change the image we have projected out side of our town, when it comes to educating our children. Economic developemnet is depending upon how well we operate our schools and that image has been vastly negative.

    Carl Johansen

    A concerned citizen of Sandwich

  17. to 8:00 am. if mr cahill keeps his cool and does not use the gaval harshly as did his good buddy, then maybe we have a chance. if he is even handed and stops one of his friends on the board from pounding the table and pointing fingers as she does, then maybe we have a chance. the current majority is not always right, but they are always civil. watch the programs again and you will see, it is mostly the pound and point person, but also the one that constantly throws sarcasm that is often wrong. as for mr cahill, he does need to understand that drugs are very very improtant. there is a movement in town to get the work out. its time for the sandwich schools to fess up. it is better that it comes from them than from the cape cod times.

  18. Monday Morning Quaterback; Chiefly US and Canadian informal a person who criticizes or suggests alternative courses of action from a position of hindsight after the event in question.

    This will only get worse before it gets better. I think the Town will be forced to settle with Dr. Johnson. A special thanks to the Sandwich SC who sealed our fate by barring the commander and chief from school property when she has a contractual right to be present. We dodged a bullet the first time around but there is no way we will dodge this bullet.

    I welcome Mr. Cahill, he will bring some manners to the SC, some sound judgement. This is serious now, we have a real mess to deal with so stop all your bickering and show some support to our newly elected members. They have a difficult job ahead of them.

    Did Randy's BOS Candidate Poll sway voters to elect Glen Pare? No, so stop throwing grenades.

  19. Let's be serious for a moment.
    Cahill and Linehan have conflicts that will make being chair extremely difficult.
    Killion is to divisive.
    Killion and Shawn will not allow Kangas to be chair.
    Therefore you have three choices left; Crossman, Catalini, or Sundermeyer.
    Catalini and Sundermeyer are new and there could be a bit of a longer learning curve but it is possible.
    Crossman is carrying the burden of the pool but I believe that she would be the best choice to lead the committee forward. The conflict for her is slight. Cahill's and Linehan's conflict is complicated at best especially with ongoing contract negotiations. Killion and Kangas are polar opposites and Catalini or Sundermeyer may be to new (but not out of the question). Crossman would be my choice.

  20. I don't agree that Nancy Crossman is the best for the job by a long shot. And this thing about being civil in public meetings is meaningless when you consider the backhanded why the majority has operated over the year. Shaun is the best bet because of his experience. Three people sit there with conflicts. Nancy has a huge conflict. Until we start getting smarter about not putting people on the SC or even the BOS with conflicts, we have to make the best of it. Cahill is clearly the best in this situation. He has the desire too, to clean this mess up. Crossman doesn't even know what she has done.

    I do hope the same as someone in a earlier post suggests, that if Shuan is elected Chair he does not revisit the arrogant style of the last three male chair's. The way this year's majority would not even listen to anyone who came before them urging restraint is an enormous form or arrogance as well. But we don't need any more arrogant chairs! I don't think he will be. His patience for the most part this year was remarkable.

  21. Vacillating Leader??May 8, 2011 at 8:08 PM

    I have not witnessed patience on Shawn's behalf. His behavior is mercurial. He rarely does his homework. He doesn't attend meetings consistently. No one can interupt him but he can interupt everyone else or attempt to answer/cover for others. Let's get real Nancy is professional and has little conflict, a swim coach... come on

  22. Maybe Catalini is best to lead and any of the others except for Killion, sorry but she just comes off as angry and unstable at times, could then co chair and help. All the incumbents have something (real, presumed, or imagined) that the community will reject or find suspect. The incumbents should recognize this and move forward with someone who has no history and will work with the new superintendent.

  23. How about a vote to see where people stand re: chairperson for BOS ? Hmmm, I think Jim P would be great! Just my opinion.

  24. Why would the BOS have to break with moving the Vice Chair to Chair. That has been working for them?

  25. Karl Joe Hansome III, Esq., Phd, LLC, Ltd, CorpMay 10, 2011 at 8:01 AM

    Joan, without a doubt Jime would do a fine job. Even though I sometimes dislike his ideas, he has a way of fostering debate. Unlike some of the gadflys, he makes his statment, backs it when he has to, but otherwise lets the townspeople discuss. He is very smart and very hardworking.

    Frank Pannorfi has a track record and got screwed by Linnell one time, he is also a good choice. Ralph Vitaco needs another year, John Kennon would also be good. If any of these guys gets the chariman job, I am OK, but only with them.

    I realize that this post is not on point and Mr. Johansen may ask Randy about it, but so be it.

  26. 8:01 AM blogger mocking Carl has potentially good things to say other than his jabs at Mr. Johansen. It is obvious that Mr. Johansen might have touched a nerve with this person. Given the blogger reaches down to behavior emulating that of what might be a preteen, Mr. Johansen can have a little laugh that many of this blogger's comments are waste of the blogger's own time. Who's going to respect this display of behavior? Haven't we been up to our eyeballs in TOS adults acting this way? Obviously not blogger 8:01 AM. He/she wants MORE! Come on 8:01. You have good stuff to say...just give your words more credit by leaving out the junk.

  27. Karl Joe Hansome III, Esq., Phd, LLC, Ltd, corpMay 11, 2011 at 7:47 AM

    Blogger of 1:44. I thank you for your comments. They were not meant to mock. Mr. Johansen does much good for the community, but he takes it a bit far. After all the things he said about Sherry Marshall, then emabarrassing her in public and giving her flowers. I feel he puts on a show, a good one at that, but people are slowly catching on. He many different groups and he is losing the halo he once had. He spreads himself too thin and does not always do the best job. His time has passed...if I only had a bucket of flowers to give to him...ah well. Just as an aside, I am not a pre-teen, however I am barely at teenager. Mr. Johansen is quite often correct and one thing he always mentions is our freedoms. I have, as you do, the freedom to write. I do not mock Mr. Johansen, I mock some of his actions just as you mock mine. God Bless America. Love to you and peace.


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